Carl Ernst | Flyleaf Books | Page: Readings & Signings | Indy Week
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Carl Ernst 

When: Mon., Nov. 28, 7-8 p.m. 2011
Price: Free

Ezra Pound defined the epic poem as a "poem containing history." Islam studies authority Carl Ernst takes that approach to the Islamic holy book in his UNC Press title How to Read the Qur'an. The UNC religious studies professor treats the Quran as literature, unpacking its composition over the two-plus decades that Gabriel spent transcribing the word of God as revealed to Muhammad. Ernst helps the curious but intimidated enter this crucial, beautiful text. Such a "nontheological" take isn't unfamiliar ground for Ernst, whose scholarship covers Islam, Sufism and the translation of al-Hallaj's poetry. The Quran is, after all, epic poetry, comprising more than 100 suras (roughly, chapters) made of varying numbers of ayat, or verses. —Chris Vitiello

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